When you are laid up with fever and not feeling well, sometimes the only thing to amuse yourself with is absurd Google searches. My ancestor known as B D Langley was dirt poor...Not a huge farm owner. When I did the search I knew Find a Grave would come up, but I was not expecting The Anti Horse Thief Association Convention 1907.
When you look at B D Langley ( he did not like Benedict) he does not look like a member of a secret society. (He is the one on the right)
He was, here he is as a member allowed to stay for the meeting.
But he was, here he is on the roll also.
Now that I know about the Anti Thief Association, and their documented membership, Bessie's story is crystal clear as to who were the masked men. These guys did more that just recover horses. If you want to read more about them click here to see the Oklahoma History site.
This was in the opening comments of the convention: "Our association is one of the best secret organizations in the United States. I do not know of any other equal to it in the scope of its real usefulness. While we are strictly non-political and non-partisan we do not
disclaim the moral influence that we have for good in the great coming new state."
My dad always said his grandfather was an Indian agent. Never could find any evidence of that, but I think this may be what it was and was translated by the family into an Indian agent. There were many from the Indian tribes associated with this Society.
I am so grateful to the Oklahoma University for digitalizing and publishing the manuscript. If you have an Indian Territory ancestor you might want to check it out. There is a eulogy of sorts for A.P. McKellog, a leader. who had died that year. Click here to view the PDF file.